Friday, October 31, 2014

Max: 9 Months

I have like 600 posts started but not finished at the moment. So, let's just talk about Max, because that I'll actually finish. I hope. 

First, Max's stats as of 9 1/2 months: 

Height: 28 inches (25% percentile, was 20% at 6 month appointment)

Weight: 19 1/2 lbs (45% percentile, was 50% at 6 month appointment)

I'm glad to see his height and weight start to move toward each other, so we don't have a short and fat baby- ha ha! 

Can we even call him a baby anymore? Look how big and grown up he is: 

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Max continues to be a happy guy, who loves being on the move. When I dare try to stop him to do something necessary like changing his diaper, I immediately become his least favorite person. The only way to stop the whining and crying is to burst into "Itsy Bitsy Spider" which is entertaining enough for him to sit still and enjoy the sweet sound of mom's off key voice. 

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In addition to having a favorite song, he also has a clear favorite book "Little Blue Truck" which my mom, Eric and I have been reading to him since he was a little baby. It's to the point now where he pays very little attention to books at our bedtime story time, unless we are reading about the Little Blue Truck, in which case he will sit attentively. I wonder if I just say "Beep! Beep! Beep!" at the beginning of any book he would be fooled?

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Max's other favorite part of story time is when I leave to go start his bath. He climbs up on Eric so he can see where I'm going and then thinks it's hilarious when I try to sneak back into the room. I then leave again to get his towel ready, come back in, Max dies laughing. I leave again to get his diaper read, come back in, Max dies laughing. Repeat. It's a pretty fun game. 

Max had his last swimming lesson the other day. He got a certificate which I tried to get a picture of below. Max LOVES swimming, splashing, watching me blow bubbles and even the slide into the water (with some help of course). But, we aren't going to do swimming next session. Our weekends have just been crazy and the kid needs me to not wake him up from every nap he takes, so… I'll wait until maybe he drops the morning nap entirely, or at least the time of it becomes more consistent and then we will do swimming again. 

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Max's had some firsts this month including his first BC football game… well mostly the tailgate, but thats the best part in my opinion.

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Tonight in his first Halloween!

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Likes: giant water bottles (actually all water bottles), trying to pull the carbon monoxide detector out of the wall (don't worry, it's in a safe outlet and makes an insane noise when it is moved so he can't do too much damage), trying to pull things off the wall in general, dancing (rocking back and forth to the music), climbing… almost everything really

Dislikes: getting his diaper changed, getting clothes put on and off, staying still

Eating: Nursing 3x a day, getting 1 bottle of pumped milk, eating 4 solid meals. Yes 4. He loves almost all food, especially oatmeal, pears is still a favorite, yogurt as well. Enjoys the inside of dumplings at Japanese and Chinese restaurants. 

Sleeping: He goes to bed around 8:15 and wakes up between 6:30-7, if all is going as planned. This weekend we change the clocks so…. who knows when all will go to plan again! 

Thanks for reading about Max… I'll be back at 10 months! It's hard to believe how close to 1 he really is! :) 

Monday, October 13, 2014

Monday Thoughts

Oh hi, it's Monday. I have the day off, yay! Every weekend should absolutely be 3 days. I need 1 day to rest (read: recover from the week), 1 day to do something fun and 1 day to be productive. Or some combination of those things. We had a good weekend so far including Teddy's 2nd Birthday Party (where I took no photos… what?!), Max's swimming lessons and a trip to the Zoo. 

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Since I have the day off, I get to take Max to his music class today. Then we are going to head over to my grandmothers to see her and my cousin and her baby. Then later today Caroline is going to join us for a fun "spooky" hayride at a nearby farm. Clearly I need every Monday off. Have I convinced you yet? 

Here are some random things I am thinking about: 

1. Some day I will do Project 333. But for now, I simply moved all the clothes I am likely to wear in the next few months to one section of my closet so I won't be searching through everything. It was about 50 clothes and this doesn't include my two pairs of jeans and any black pants. I currently hate all of my black pants so I don't think I'm going to get much use out of all those shirts I have hanging. I wonder if I can make it through a whole winter of only wearing dresses and leggings to work? 

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2. We have recently made some changes to our kitchen. Well, it's kind of like the extension of the kitchen where we used to have a kitchen table. Now it's Max's play area and it has a newly clean wall space. I'm considering some kind of Instagram decor. But it has to be EASY or I'll never do it. Maybe this: 

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or this: 

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3. I have read some fun books lately so I owe you guys a post with some recommendations. My original reading goal for this year was 20 books and I just adjusted it to 45. It's nice to know I have one hobby that has not completely disappeared with motherhood. Ha ha. 

4. Goals for this week: finish another book and part with 10 more items of clothing. 

What's going on with you this week? 

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Dear Max (8.5 months)

Dear Max, 

I stopped counting your age by weeks somewhere around month 2, but Instagram tells me that you are 37 weeks old. This is the type of completely ridiculous milestone that only a mom would care about but since you were born at 36.5 weeks, you have officially been out in the world as long as you were in my "tummy." I have liked these 37 weeks much better than those 36.5 and judging by your desire to get out early, I'm guessing you feel the same. 

At 37 weeks, you are a busy little guy. You got your first cold this weekend. You were super cranky and kept looking at us like "why are you two not fixing this?" You know how when adults get a cold you can tell in their voice? Well, when babies get a cold, you can tell by their cry. You also had a to miss swimming lessons, and stay home most of the weekend. You don't understand the concept of resting, so when we try to get you to relax and cuddle with us, you decided instead to use us as a climbing wall and grab everything in sight.

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You are getting even faster with your special one knee down "Max crawling." You can pretty much get anywhere these days. I just ordered our first baby gate yesterday and more will need to follow. 

You can even crawl up the stairs, if you feel like it. Sure, it involves me putting something you really want just out of reach and then slowly moving it up the stairs as you crawl. But you can do it. 

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We have implemented "family story time" every night, where the 3 of us get into our bed and read you a story. It sounds good in theory but you have no patience for books at night. You either try to eat the book, or ignore the book jump on the bed instead. You love jumping on the bed. 

You eat a lot more now and you love feeding yourself. You always open your mouth before you have even fully picked up the food you are going to put in, which I find hilarious. I give you bites of whatever I am eating. In some ways you are just like us: you have a sweet tooth and you love bread with olive oil. But tonight, you didn't like anything about mashed potatoes, so maybe you aren't related to us after all. 

The other night, you and Dad wore matching sweatshirts on our walk, but ironically the first unprompted stranger said that you look just like me. Yay! 

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Speaking of walks, you are getting pretty heavy to wear on the front in the Ergo. You must be over 20 pounds by now. But it's worth the effort because whenever I walk with you, you grab on to my finger and we hold hands. 

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You are finally less of a screaming nightmare in the car. When I pick you up from Nonna and Pops house, you pull on your toys and babble to yourself for the ten minute car ride home. This would've been unfathomable during the summer. I still don't think you enjoy being restrained in the car, but at least you tolerate it better in the right conditions (short periods of time, not at night). Thank you for that. 

You still love music. I now use it as a bargaining tool when I am trying to change your diaper which is your latest hatred. You started music class with Nonna last week and I am so excited I get to take you on Monday. I love watching you rock back and forth when music comes on. 

I think you may be really starting to recognize people. You give smiles to people you know, and stare in shock at people who are unfamiliar to you. They eventually get smiles too. You have always loved seeing people- you are a very social little guy. You basically make everyone's day with your smiles. 

Thanks for being the best baby. 

Love, Mom (or Mama, or Mommy, or whatever you want to say… unless you just plan to say Dada only forever ha ha)

 

 

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Pretend Summer and This Week's Goals

This weekend was a great throwback to summer. Not only was the weather sunny and over 80 degrees both days, but we were back at the Cape. It's a lot more complicated visiting the Cape with Max for just a weekend. The logistics alone make it almost not worth it and then throw in a lot of traffic and a screaming baby… sigh. But, it is such a happy place for us that we have to do it every once in awhile. 

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I was almost able to pretend it was still summer. 

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I didn't post about my goals last week, but don't worry I had some. They resulted in me getting rid of several mugs- anyone else hoard mugs? It might be a teacher thing. I also accomplished my goals from the week before. Most notably, Max's sleep has improved a lot. Thank goodness. 

The week ahead brings Curriculum Night where I have to make a big presentation at night. I am not a night person and I still have to teach all day before, and all day the next day so I'm going to need to rally all my energy. Therefore, goals this week are: 

1. Read 50% of my book. Just started Dollbaby today. Hopefully it will get me in the spirit to go visit "the south" in February, ha ha. 

2. Some movement every day: swim, walk, something. Today I went for a bike ride, so off to a good start. 

How was your weekend? What are you up to this week? 

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Max: 8 Months

Wow, a LOT happened in Max land this past month! Hopefully I won't forget anything :) 

In no particular order (because I already forget the exact order): 

Max started to crawl. It was a slow process for him and if he could've avoided it all together I think he would've. He started by crawling one step and then sitting back up. Now, he really crawls, but his crawl is a very unique version that does not involve putting his right knee on the ground at all. Seriously, the kid just wants to walk. 

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Which leads in nicely to his other new skill: pulling up on everyone and everything. I really mean everyone. If you sit on the floor to play with him, he will likely abandon his toys, crawl over to you and then stand himself up while holding on your legs, or head, whatever is at the appropriate level for him. He also walks along furniture items, such as my bed. He wants to stand/walk so badly that he often just lets go… which currently results in him falling but, it's only a matter of time now. 

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Max has also added a "word" to his Max language: Dadadadadadada, with an occasional Dad-EEE thrown in for good measure. It's up for debate if he knows who his Dada actually is, but he at least says it frequently. In case you were keeping track, yes my parents did test out the theory of saying "mama" over and over again to Max since he was born to see if he would say "Mama" first. Didn't work ;)

Also on the language front, Max can sign "milk." In case you were wondering, the sign for milk looks like you are milking a cow. His understanding of this word is also up for debate. I'm convinced he knows it has to do with food, but he often signs it also while eating solid food, so I think I may have accidentally lead him to believe it means "more food" by often forgetting to do it until midway through nursing sessions. Oops. 

Max began swimming lessons and learned how to kick. He also attempted once to blow bubbles but at the moment this consists of sticking the tip of his nose in the water and then coming back up looking a bit shocked. 

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Thank you to those of you who encouraged me to do swim lessons with Max even though we knew it would be a busy time. It has actually been the best possible time to have this super positive and fun half hour to spend with such a cute and happy little guy :) 

Finally, the last exciting milestone… Max can feed himself Cheerios! If you know me, you know about my love for Cheerios. I am excited he shares this love and that I now have someone to blame when I leave my inevitable trail of Cheerios around the house. Yay! 

But this month was not all exciting milestones. Both Eric and I went back to work, and leaving Max seemed (for me at least) much harder the second go around. Plus, Max decided to stop sleeping through the night. At first it was just waking up to eat, and that was fine, but then it became "I want to play for hours in the middle of the night!" at which point we needed to put a stop to things. We started officially "sleep training" last week, beginning with bedtime and moving to the middle of the night. I'm not going to lie, it completely sucked in every way except one…he is now going to bed on his own and has slept through the night 2 of the last 4 nights. I don't think I'm done by any means, but I'm crossing my fingers that at least the hardest part is over now. 

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Likes: taking all his books off the shelf, Cheerios, climbing, watching people do silly things, smiles, walks, staring at people, swimming lessons (particularly kicking and mom blowing bubbles)

Dislikes: when mom and dad don't want to play at 2am, still not a big fan of the car but this has definitely improved

Eating: He is currently eating about 4 solid meals a day and 4 nursing sessions (1 bottle on the days I'm at work and since he is still kind of not the biggest bottle fan, my mom often just mixes the milk into his food). 

Sleeping: Most of this month sleep consisted of an 8:15 bedtime, followed by 1 wake up anytime between 12 and 5 am, lasting anywhere from 20 minutes to 2-3 hours, wake up time around 7. His naps started around 8:30-9am and 12:30-1pm, they lasted anywhere from 1-2 hours. He is basically down to 2 naps these days. 

And now, we have an 8 month old! :) Thanks again for reading! 

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Sleep and Weekly Goals

Last week was not my favorite. The transition back to work has been rough. It was 100 times easier last time (in April) for two reasons: Max actually slept at night (#1 reason) and I already knew my students and was coming back to them so I wasn't teaching all the routines and procedures of the beginning of the year, and trying to get to know my students and their parents. It actually makes me sad that this class doesn't know Max at all… I almost miss how much students would interrupt my lesson to say, "so, how's Max doing?" But really, the time, energy and mental effort involved in the beginning of kindergarten is not for the sleep deprived person. 

Max has decided he no longer sleeps through the night. At first, he just woke up, had a quick snack and was back to sleep. I didn't love it, but I figured he must be hungry and at least it was a quick wake up (though it always takes me awhile to get back to sleep). The past two weeks though, it's more like wake up, take a sip of milk, decide he's not hungry, try to play, test out new crawling skills, maybe pull up on the side of crib, cry for mom, try to play, cry for mom again, etc. Blah, I know I have to sleep train but my one attempt went horrible and no amount of ignoring crying in kindergarten can prepare you for listening to your baby scream in the next room. 

Good thing he is cute. 

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Last week's goals were to walk or swim every night and to control my media use by avoiding the computer after Max was asleep and deleting the Facebook app on my phone. I did great with goal #1, I walked every single night even the nights that I swam. This won't be one of my goals this week but I'm sure I will do it again as it's really just the best thing for our whole family. My media use was okay- I did go on the computer a couple of times after Max was asleep, simply because I had to do something for work or pay a bill etc. I forgot that some days that is really my only opportunity to get on the computer between work and taking care of Max. Even still, I had no problem shutting it off to go to bed early, so that's good. I kept the Facebook app off my phone all week, but I did have a few instances where I went to the website… still that had to be more intentional than just clicking on the app so, I think I'll probably keep the app off my phone for now and see if I can kind of slowly make myself less dependent. 

Goals for Week of 9/14

1. Read more. It's so hard to fit in, but I'm always happier when I do. Try to get 50% of the way through my new book: The Last Letter from Your Lover by Jojo Meyes

2. Train Max to go to bed without falling asleep nursing. It's going to stink but that's the first step in training this baby not to wake up to play in the middle of the night. I'm going to start on Thursday so I only have 1 more day to get through of work, and hopefully by the next Monday things won't be super terrible. Then in a few weeks I'll tackle the middle of the night wake ups (unless they stop, which would be even better). 

And here is your unsolicited advice from me this week. #1- don't have kids, #2- don't teach kindergarten and #3- if you don't listen to me about 1 or 2, please at least don't do both. Thank me later :)

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Saving Sanity and Weekly Goals

I'm really liking these weekly goals- if nothing else, it forces me to blog once a week. Ha ha. I survived the first week of school, didn't actually have students but sitting through training all day is definitely a special kind of torture, so survival is an accomplishment. Max did pretty well with my first week of work. He wasn't big on napping but that's not too different from the norm...

I did well with my goals last week. I took a walk every night and I turned off my computer by 9… well sometimes 9:20, but definitely earlier than I was before so I consider that a win. The nightly walks are a sanity saver for our whole family and we even managed to walk in a few different places this week which was fun. Below is a photo of the reservoir near my house which is definitely an old favorite walking location. According to my Fitness Magazine that I was reading on the elliptical the other day, you really only need to take 4-5, 30 minute walks per week for health purposes. If you want to lose weight, obviously you need to do more but it's good to know that in this season (of life) where sometimes the workouts happen and sometimes they don't, I'm really not sacrificing my health at all. I mean sure, these magazines most likely make up stats and you can find a study to back up basically any claim but, I'm just going to call it a win for now and not question it. 

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Here are some other sanity savers I've been trying out: doing all prep for the morning in advance (picking out clothes, packing lunches, packing insane number of bags I need these days), planning with Eric for the week in advance including who will pick up Max, who will work out when, what we are eating for dinner etc, grocery shopping every 2 weeks with a small Trader Joe's run on the "off" week. I'm currently loving all of these things, so let's hope I am motivated to keep them up. 

When I look ahead to this upcoming week, I'm going to continue to focus on sanity savers. Unfortunately Max is in a really bad sleep phase at the moment. As a result, I really need to focus on taking care of myself so that I can function on far less sleep than I am used to/need. Also I have to deal with 23 kindergarten kids all day starting tomorrow. Sigh. 

Goals for Week of 9/7:

1. Continue nightly walks or other exercise (swimming counts, so does strollerblading if we get motivated to do that).

2. Decrease technology use, specifically: delete FB app from phone, read or go to bed after Max is asleep.

 

And on that note, Max is asleep so I should be turning off my computer. I hope everyone had a great weekend!